8 Beautiful HDB Corridor Gardens in Singapore: How to Green Your Home

Mary Wu
8 Beautiful HDB Corridor Gardens in Singapore: How to Green Your Home
It’s a well-known fact that plants can be beneficial to us, not just by producing oxygen in the day and cleaning the air, but having these green guardians around might also help to reduce stress and beautify the home.
Besides, didn’t many of us turn to gardening during the pandemic as a hobby? There’s also research that having plants around can help cool the environment, and we might even save some money by eating what we grow. NParks also distributed seed packets to households for us to start growing our own edibles!
Let’s turn our focus to the area outside our home – literally the green gateway, or corridor garden – and how some folks with green fingers in Singapore (maybe your neighbours as well!) have been cultivating this common space with care.

1. Flower Power in Toa Payoh

Francine, a long-time resident of Toa Payoh, started her HDB corridor garden in early 2022. Since then, under the care of her amazing green fingers, the space has literally bloomed, with colourful flowers and a variety of plants that include Queen of Night, Inchplant, Begonia Rose, Desert Rose, Kampong Rose, Jasmine, Pandan plant, Hibiscus and Air plant.
She says, “I decided to have a corridor garden because it’s a healthy hobby and it’s great for seniors. Doing gardening is also a form of exercise as you need to attend to the plants daily.”
For those keen to begin, Francine advises that they start small and increase their collection gradually, as she did. Her first plants were a few pots of hibiscus and orchids, after which she slowly expanded with other leafy and flowering plants.

2. Gorgeous Urban Jungle

We were enthralled by this perfectly framed shot, which featured the popular Monstera deliciosa, Anthurium vittariifolium, Philodendron billietiae, Rhaphidophora tetrasperma and even a Vanda orchid.
This plant parent also has a cat, so she needs to ensure that her kitty knows not to chew on her plants, and to be mindful of not growing – or keeping out of reach – plants that are potentially poisonous to her pet.

3. Captivating Corridor

We are also mighty impressed by this HDB corridor jungle, which looks so lush, like it belongs in Gardens by the Bay. It’s no simple feat, as commentators have said, “I tried growing my corridor… Wah, disaster. Lack of sun, and windy like 24/7. Nothing grows.”
To this, the plant parent replied, concurring, “Yes, it is a real struggle for me too. I get some direct evening sun for only a few months and I have failed with some plants that need that extra light or humidity.”

4. For Nourishment and Love for Nature

HDB corridor gardener Shirley grows a mixture of edibles and non-edibles, such as kailan, pandan, tomato, Philodendron red congo, orchids, round eggplants, tangerine, Thai basil, Aglaonema, and more.
In addition to posting photos of the blooms and edibles she harvests for her meals, Shirley also shares care tips for certain plants and even why she chooses to grow a certain edible.
“One good thing about growing kai lan is that no birdies want to eat their young leaves! Unlike my Bayam seedlings and capsicum seedlings,” she remarks in another post.

5. Inspo Outside Your Door

For Angela, her HDB corridor garden began during the pandemic. She recalls, “After being stuck at home during the Circuit Breaker, I decided to get some indoor house plants to beautify my home and corridor. It made me happy to open my door and see my plants thriving and growing.”
Indeed, it is a joy, not just for herself, but for fellow neighbours who drop by and admire her small but neat and well-maintained corridor garden.

6. Gardens by the Corridor

With a hashtag as cute (and as apt) as #gardensbythecorridor, we have to give props to this plant parent who arranges his babies on a plant rack and even has a name for the space where he places those he has propagated successfully (Propagation University).
As for his remark on “accidentally” purchased plants, we’re sure many fellow plant parents can relate to that!

7. So Attractive, Even Bees Came!

For this Pasir Ris resident, his #gardensbythebalcony was growing so lush that it attracted bees to build a huge beehive that caused the wooden structure on his balcony to give way. In fact, that’s not the only rare occurrence this gardener has experienced – with his green fingers, he’s also managed to coax a Stapelia gigantea (also known as carrion flower) to bloom.

8. Mini Garden of Love

For this HDB-dwelling couple, they maintain a mini garden outside their love nest, along the corridor. It’s modest (and what many of us have), but what stands out is their choice of plants which makes this green space look aesthetically pleasing. There’s even a small tree!
Speaking of which, this Instagram account documents the time when a mama bird decided to build her nest in their tree – eggs were laid and they even hatched! This goes to show the wonders of nature that can happen right in one’s HDB corridor garden.

Tips on Growing Plants in Singapore

If you’re thinking of embarking on your plant-growing journey, there’s no better time than to start now. We’ve seen HDB corridor gardeners grow, harvest and eat their own edibles – this not only means we can save some money on food but growing food locally is part of Singapore’s 30 by 30 Green Plan.
In addition, for those with little ones in the household, showing them how much care and time goes into growing their favourite vegetable from seed helps them appreciate how precious food is. This, in turn, could translate to our future generation being mindful of food waste, for a more sustainable Singapore.
For those of us in the midst of searching for our dream home, becoming fully-fledged plant parents also means you might want to look for a property that’s plant-friendly. Once we have the infrastructure, we can go the extra mile and be more sustainable at home by making our own compost for gardening from leftover food scraps, growing our own herbs and more.
For new plant parents, Angela and Francine also have some useful tips they’ve gleaned during their own journey.
“I water my plants once every few days. A plus point is that my corridor is bright but not exposed to direct sunlight, so my plants are pretty easy to maintain,” Angela shares.
“I water my garden twice a day but have to be mindful of certain plants that do not like too much water, such as the Begonia Rose and Queen of Night. Like humans, plants also need nutrients so you need to fertilise them weekly. Check plants for pests like mealy bugs, white flies, spider mites, snails, etc. If any of these pests are present, you need to treat the plant immediately as they can spread to neighbouring plants. Remove weeds if any,” Francine adds.

Rules on Growing Plants in HDB Corridor

Growing plants in your HDB corridor should not just be a show of how big and bountiful your garden can be – we should also be mindful of our neighbours, as well as rules for using this shared space.
For instance, the same rules that apply to HDB common areas apply. Don’t put your big pots of plants at the HDB staircase landing as that should remain unobstructed at all times (yes, even if the sunlight there is fantastic). Remember that you also shouldn’t block access to the staircase, even if it seems no one is using it anyway.
Along the common corridor, ensure that there’s at least a 1.2m wide clearance for people, rescue equipment and fellow neighbours who may use wheelchairs to pass. For those who live in flats where the common corridor is less than 1.2m wide, we’re sorry, but you can’t put anything there at all. Time to move your plant babies inside, or perhaps find a more spacious plant-friendly flat on PropertyGuru?
Do also ensure that the items you store in your common corridor aren’t things that can easily catch fire, such as carton boxes and other papers.
NParks has also come up with a handbook on good corridor gardening practices. These include making sure your planters and racks are securely fastened, not putting your plant pots on the parapet walls (you might be fined for high-rise littering or even killer litter should the pots fall), and ensuring they do not breed mosquitoes (you can be penalised by NEA when they come round to inspect).
Basically, just remember to keep your HDB corridor garden neat and orderly, don’t obstruct the way and don’t introduce any potential hazards (even plants with sharp thorns or climbing plants that may loosen your windows or gates can be potential issues).
“As the corridor is for common use, you need to ensure that there is a 1.2m space (a requirement by Town Council) especially if you have elderly neighbours who use the wheelchair. It’s not advisable to drill holes in the ceiling of your corridor to hang plants as this could be hazardous as well,” Francine advises.
“I check that the plant dish does not collect water to prevent mozzies from breeding. I also clean the area frequently to ensure no dried leaves are left behind,” Angela mentions.
Now you’re all ready to give your green fingers a whirl!
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FAQs About HDB Corridor Gardens in Singapore

You cannot place objects along a common corridor that is less than 1.2m wide.

Ensure your planters, pots and racks are neatly positioned and do not obstruct the corridor (1.2m clear space). But for healthy plants, check how much sunlight your space receives in a day.

No, you cannot paint directly on HDB walls. But you can decorate it with easy-to-remove items such as paper cut-outs.

You can try your hand at growing herbs such as Thai basil and dill, or leafy greens from seeds such as kang kong, nai bai, spinach and pak choy.